Historic Cotswold People

The Cotswolds Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty

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Historic Characters with Cotswold Links

The Cotswolds is linked with a lot of historic characters.

Winston Churchill: The Greatest Briton

Winston Churchill: The Greatest Briton

Winston Churchill (1874 - 1965)

Winston Churchill was born and brought up at Blenheim Palace, found in the Oxfordshire town of Woodstock.

Blenheim Palace was designed by Nicholas Hawksmoor and Sir John Vanbrugh.

Winston Churchill is buried in the cemetary of the church at the small village of Bladon which is a a few miles away from Blenheim Palace and Woodstock.

More about Winston Churchill can be found on the Winston Churchill page

Elgar (Illustrated Lives of the Great Composers)

Elgar (Illustrated Lives of the Great Composers)

Edward Elgar (1857 - 1934)

Edward William Elgar (later to become Sir Edward Elgar) was an English Composer who was born in the village of Lower Broadheath (near Worcester) on June 2nd 1857.

His father, William Elgar, ran a shop sellling sheet music and musical instruments.

Edward Elgar left school at 15 and worked for a solicitor for a short time before embarking on a musical career.

In 1899, his The Enigma Variations was premiered in London.

Holst (Illustrated Lives of the Great Composers)

Holst (Illustrated Lives of the Great Composers)

Gustav Holst (1874 - 1934)

Gustav Theodore von Holst was a British composer who was born in Cheltenham, Gloucestershire on 21st September 1874 and died in London on 25th May 1934.

Holst was educated as Pate's Grammar School before going on to study at London's Royal College of Music.

The birthplace of Gustav Holst can be visited in Cheltenham

William Morris (1834 - 1896)

William Morris was a writer, designer and socialist and was a well known designer and founder of the Arts and Crafts movement. Morris was born on March 24th 1834 in Walthamstow and died on October 3rd 1896.

Kelmscott Manor was the county home of William Morris from 1871 until his death in 1896.

William Morris had two daughters, Jane and Mary.

More details about William Morris

The Complete Works of William Shakespeare

The Complete Works of William Shakespeare

William Shakespeare (1564 - 1616)

William Shakespeare, the English poet and playwright, was born and raised in Stratford-upon-Avon.

He is thought of by many as one of the greatest English language writers of all time.

His works are still studied and performed nearly 400 years after his death.

John Singer Sargent

John Singer Sargent

John Singer Sargent (1856 - 1925)

John Singer Sargent was an American painter, famous for his portraits.

Despite being thought of as an American artist, Sargent lived most of his life in Europe and was born in Italy.

In 2004, Sargent's painting "Portrait of Robert Louis Stevenson and his Wife" was sold for $8.8m

Sargent stayed in Broadway, Worcestershire and is buried in Brookwood Cemetary near Woking.



Ralph Vaughan Williams (1872–1958)

Ralph Vaughan Williams was an influential English composer who was born in Down Ampney (a short distance from Cirencester) on 12th October 1872.

His father, the Rev. Arthur Vaughan Williams, was the vicar of Down Ampney.

He was educated at Charterhouse School, then Trinity College, Cambridge. Later he was a pupil of Stanford and Parry at the Royal College of Music after which he studied with Max Bruch in Berlin and Maurice Ravel in Paris.

Vaughan Williams was married twice. His first marriage was in 1896 to Adeline Fisher. She died in 1951 after many years of suffering from crippling arthritis.
In 1953 he married the poet Ursula Wood (1911-2007).

Famous works include The Lark Ascending (1914) and the opera Sir John in Love (1924-28), from which comes an arrangement by Ralph Greaves of Fantasia on "Greensleeves".



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